July 28th, 2014
Take that San Francisco! The Dodgers went into the Bay Area and swept a 3 game set from the Giants over the weekend, and reclaimed a 1.5 game lead in the NL West. San Fran stood no chance against Zach Greinke or Clayton Kershaw, while Hyun-Jin Ryu was solid last night. Admit it….some of you Dodger fans were nervous that Jake Peavy was on the hill last night for the Giants, since he’s owned LA over the years. You probably forgot that this isn’t the same Peavy that was the ace of the Padres. The Boys in Blue rattled Peavy for four runs, which was enough for Ryu and the bullpen. As for Kershaw, watching this guy pitch is simply amazing. He is a once in a generation player that makes me stop what I am doing to watch him. It’s about time that the team with the highest payroll in baseball started playing like a real team. It remains to be seen if it continues.
Somebody needs to tell Dave Stewart, Matt Kemp’s agent, to shut the hell up. If there’s anybody creating unnecessary drama between the Dodgers five outfielders, and straining the relationship between Kemp and the Dodgers, it’s Stewart. Kemp has been swinging the bat well of late, and the Dodgers need his bat in the lineup to be an elite team. It’s Stewart that has been creating these ridiculous Kemp for Jon Lester rumors. As I’ve been saying for weeks, the Boys in Blue just need a little bullpen help, and then take their chances with the roster they have. Adding another starter is overkill on a team with three aces. That’s like ordering another round of dessert after eating a couple of ice cream sundaes. For all of Kemp’s issues he’s working through, he’s still a better player than Crawford or Ethier. As good as Joc Pederson could eventually be, it doesn’t make sense to depend on him in an everyday role in the middle of a pennant race either. Matt, tell your agent to keep his mouth shut until the off-season, when everything can be sorted out. In the meantime, be a team guy, and just be happy you’re in the lineup everyday.
The Angels are also continuing to play great baseball. The Halos took three out of four from the Tigers over the weekend, which kept them 2 games back of Oakland in the AL West, and comfortably leading the AL Wild Card. When the season started, we all thought the Halos had no pitching, a questionable bullpen, and few minor leaguers that could make an impact at the major league level. We were obviously about as wrong as ESPN NBA analyst. In their last three games the Angels have given up two runs, and none of those games were started by the front end of the rotation. Efren Navarro should now be referred to as “F’in Navarro!” because the kid can play. I could swear that I have seen just about all six of David Freese’ home runs this year, in person. It’s like he’s trying to convince me not to rip him on Jock Talk LA, even though he’s been terrible for most of the season. More importantly, the new and improved bullpen has been lights out so far. The Halos are looking like a dangerous ball club.
The Lakers have finally hired a head coach. After going through three rounds of interviews and endless waiting, Byron Scott agreed to a 4 year contract with the team he once played for. Most people think that it won’t matter who the Lakers coach is because they won’t be any good next year anyway. However, this was a very important move for the Buss Family. Jim Buss has made two horrendous hires in a row. He has finally made a move that will at least bring stability to an organization that has been in turmoil for years. Scott is a disciplinarian. So is his star player, Kobe Bryant. Scott believes in defense first. Resolving those two issues alone could go a long way toward putting the Lakers back on the right track, even though it will likely take time. Most importantly, Scott was a Laker. He understands what it means to be one, and what it will take to restore the franchise to what it once was.
Rumor had it that the Lakers were waiting things out on hiring a coach, in order to see if Doc Rivers would eventually quit his job with the Clippers, and potentially coach the Lake Show. Obviously that never came to fruition, but that doesn’t mean Doc won’t quit. Donald Sterling is refusing to let go. He just doesn’t get it. Doc Rivers, Chris Paul, and other Clipper players have been telling people they are considering sitting out the season if Sterling is still the owner. Wouldn’t that be something? Just when you think the Clippers are on the rise and building something to be reckoned with, Donald ends up being the one to blow the whole thing up. I definitely believe that Doc would quit, but I also have a hard time believing the Clipper players are going to sit out and forgo millions of dollars in salary over this. It’s an interesting situation to keep an eye on if Sterling refuses to let go of his ownership. But for the Clipper players, these seem more like idol threats.
Speaking of the NBA, what are the Cavs and Warriors thinking? Both of these teams should have acquired Kevin Love weeks ago, and are holding the deal up over players that are nothing more than spare parts. The Cavs were actually debating whether or not to include Andrew Wiggins in their offer for Love. Wiggins could be a great player in three years, but during that time with Love they will be contending for titles. The Warriors are refusing to offer Klay Thompson, who is nothing more than a nice role player, who will be overpaid very soon. Both these teams could build a super power by adding a player like Kevin Love. A Steph Curry-Kevin Love combo would shoot right to the top of the Western Conference for the next a few years. A Love-Lebron-Kyrie combo in Cleveland would be winning titles in no time. This is just another example of how there are many more terrible GM’s in the NBA, than good ones.
Well this is awkward. ESPN’s Stephen A Smith is in trouble for some comments he made regarding Ray Rice and his domestic abuse incident with his wife. “Screamin” A Smith said “let’s make sure we don’t do anything to provoke wrong actions, because if I come, or somebody else come, whether it’s law enforcement officials, your brother or the fellas that you know, if we come after somebody has put their hands on you, it doesn’t negate the fact that they already put their hands on you. So let’s try to make sure that we can do our part in making sure that that doesn’t happen.” This of course resulted in a strong response from Smith’s co-worker, Michelle Beadle, who’s tweet you can see below. I’m not sure if these comments are a fire-able offense, but they are a little thoughtless and insensitive. This is probably where Smith takes his act to satellite radio where he can rant and rave all he wants.
So I was just forced to watch this morning’s First Take. A) I’ll never feel clean again B) I’m now aware that I can provoke my own beating.
— Michelle Beadle (@MichelleDBeadle) July 25, 2014
Finally, it’s coming. You’ve been waiting a whole year for it. This Wednesday, on SyFy, will be the sequel you’ve all been waiting for: Sharknado 2. That’s right folks. The first movie just wasn’t terrible enough, that they had to create a second one. I don’t know about you guys, but I am going to be firmly planted on my couch on Wednesday evening for this historically bad television that will be airing.